Posted in fanfiction, reader insert, steve rogers

The Pain in Serendipity – 22

The Pain in Serendipity – A Captain America Fanfic

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Character Pairing:  Steve Rogers x F!Reader, Bucky Barnes x Steve Rogers (possible polyamory in future).

Rating: E

Word Count: 2270

Warnings: angst, blip stuff.

Synopsis:   When Thanos snaps his fingers it takes your daughter and Steve Rogers’ first love with it.  Together you pick up the pieces, falling in love and building a family together.  Finding serendipity in your shared trauma.  When opportunity comes to bring back those who are lost comes with the risk of more loss for you both.  Is it worth taking the risk?

Chapter 22

You had gone into work the day following Tony Stark’s funeral trying to feel positive.  You were going to try making friends with Mark and Julia in the hope that there could be some agreement made that you could all be part of Isabella’s life.  You were also going to start working harder at getting families who were in arguments about custody arrangements to try and do the same. You had an idea that maybe you could hold a picnic or book out Luna Park for all the families that were affected and maybe under a relaxed setting everyone could see that these children were all loved and maybe it could stop being a conversation about who had the right to raise the children, and turn into one about how can everyone involved be a part of their children’s lives.

That was your hope anyway.  By mid-morning that hope had been shattered.

The government had ruled that because all the people who had been blipped had never agreed to any of the legal changes passed while they were gone, everything would revert to them.  Property sold or willed to others, jobs lost, children adopted out, everything would be returned to the people blipped unless it was completely impossible.  In cases of homes burned down or destroyed, payouts would be received to rehome them.  New homeowners would receive refunds from the people they purchased from so they weren’t left out of pocket, but in many cases that might be difficult or even impossible.  Anyone who had moved to the US during the blip years would have their visas or citizenship revoked.  Those displaced due to housing would be placed in refugee camps.

There would be a month for people to vacate properties so the original owners could move back in.  It could take up to a year for all financials to be sorted out.  Children had to be returned to the biological parents within two weeks unless an alternative agreement had been reached.

It meant the adoptive parents had no rights. There was no recourse to be taken.  If the biological parents decided that the adoptive ones would never see them again, then that’s how it would be.

You didn’t even have time to even process the fact that you might never get to see Isabella again when the phone calls started coming through.  You spent hours fielding calls from distraught adoptive parents terrified they’d never get to see their kids again, while at the same time trying to organize handovers.  You were scared that people might run.  If they had no homes anymore, maybe it would be better to leave and keep your children.  You spoke to police and judges and the government representatives who had decided this stupid fucked up answer to things because the people who had been left behind hadn’t experienced enough trauma.

By the time FRIDAY forced you to take a break at three you felt numb and exhausted.  The kids would be finished school and Callie would be bringing them back to the tower soon.  Steve was still working with Bruce on the time travel platform and you realized how badly you needed him to be here because this was too much.  There was too much happening and you didn’t know if you were going to be able to keep it together for them.

You were just pulling out your phone to call him and see if he could come back when the Ricci’s found you.  “You heard the news?” Mark asked.

You froze with your phone in your hand, and started to tremble, you swallowed and nodded.  “I’ve been dealing with it all morning.  I hope that…”

“Look,” Mark said, cutting you off.  “It’s clear you’re a good person. You saved all these kids and found them homes.  You took care of Bella all these years.  And well, Captain Rogers is -” he gave his hand a wave.  “We appreciate what you’ve done for us, and her.  But when we get our house back, we don’t want either of you seeing her again.”

It felt like your heart had stopped beating and the air had been sucked from your lungs. You knew they weren’t exactly thrilled at having any kind of shared custody agreement but you hadn’t expected them to say you couldn’t ever see her again.  “But – what –  why?” you stammered, unable to get your exhausted and shocked mind to form a coherent sentence.

“We just think that it would be too hard for her to figure out where she belongs if she keeps seeing you. She’s our daughter and you and Steve being around will just confuse her,” Mark explained.

You braced yourself on the wall to stop yourself from sinking to the ground.  “But – what she’s been through.  She already has separation anxiety.  This will destroy her.”

“It’ll be hard to start off with, but she got used to us not being there, she’ll get used to you and Captain Rogers not being there too.  Especially when we explain that you were just looking after her until we got back,” Mark said.

“Besides,” Julia added.  “Are you really worried about her or are you worried about yourself?”

“How could you say that?” you shouted.  Your heart was definitely beating now.  It was thundering in your chest, almost drowning out everything else.  The Ricci’s blanched and you immediately regretted the outburst.  If you wanted to convince them to let you stay in her life you needed to play nice.  “I’m sorry.  I’m sorry, okay?  Of course, I don’t want to lose her. I’ve been raising her as my own for the past five years.  I love her.  She’s my daughter.  And she has trauma.  I’ve been getting her therapy and sending her to school and making sure she is as happy and healthy as possible.  I care about her wellbeing and I think this is a mistake.”

“You aren’t her mother though,” Julia snapped.  “I am.  And I think she’ll be better off with a clean break.  We’ll be taking her with us as soon as we have our house back.”

“Please, don’t do this,” you pleaded.

“We’re sorry,” Mark said.  “We know you love her and we appreciate everything you’ve done.  Really we do.  But we have to do what’s right for our family.”

“Please,” you said softly.  “She’s my family too.”

They looked at you with pity but left without saying a word.  You sank to your knees breaking down completely as you fumbled for your phone. Your vision blurred as you instructed it to call Steve.

“Hey, honey,” Steve said when the call connected.

“Steve,” you sobbed, your voice breaking as you completely broke down.  “I need you to come home.  Can you come home?”

“Of course,” he said.  “What’s wrong?  What happened?”

“They said we have no rights,” you sobbed. “I’ve been on the phone all day and I came out, and they taking Bella.  They said we won’t be able to see her again.”

Steve didn’t say anything and for a moment you wondered if the call had disconnected. “Steve?” you whispered.  “Are you there?”

“Yes,” he said, his voice steady but emotionless.  “I’m on my way.  Just – hold tight, sweetheart.”

It was two hours before Steve got home.  In that time the kids got home from school and you forced your game face on as you had an after-school snack and spoke to them about their days before you had to get back to work.  FRIDAY was nudging you to finish up for the day when Steve came in.

You jumped to your feet and rushed to him.  He wrapped his arms around you and you melted into him, the tears breaking again.  He held you without saying anything – just letting you cry, your tears soaking through his shirt.

As you started getting yourself under control he pulled back and looked down at you.  “What exactly happened?  Sam looked up the things with the government declaring legal ownership of goods and property as well as guardianships reverting to the blipped, but what’s going on with Bella?”

“I went to take a break,” you said as you looked at him.  “Mark and Julia came and found me. They said they thought it was best for Bella if she didn’t have us in her life because as it stood she’d just get confused having us around anymore.  They said she’d be told we were just taking care of her until they get back.”

Steve frowned.  “They won’t even let us see her sometimes?  Not even just playdates?”

You shook your head and started sobbing again, hiccupping with each word.  “They … think …  that it … will just … confuse … her … and if she … could get over … losing … them, she’ll … get over … losing us.”

He pulled away from you and started pacing.  “But she never got over them.  Don’t they know that?”

You felt yourself shrinking back and you shook your head.  “I don’t know.  I guess they think we tried to replace them.”

Steve strode over to you and grabbed your arms.  “I’ll go see if I can get them to see sense.”

“Don’t yell at them, Steve,” you said.  “We don’t want them to be scared of us.”

“I won’t,” he said and kissed your forehead.  “Wait here.”

You nodded and took a seat on your couch, breathing deeply so you can at least get control of yourself before you go out and eat with your kids.

There was a soft click as your office door opened and you looked up through red-rimmed eyes to see Bucky slipping through the door.  He hovered for a moment, half-in and half-out, shifting slightly from one state to the other.  You didn’t say anything, just watched and waited for him to speak.  You didn’t have the energy to ask him what he wanted, and besides, he was so flighty, it was always easier to wait and let him come to you.

After a little while, he stepped into the room.  “Hey,” he said.


He took a few more steps toward you.  “I heard.  Are you okay?”

You don’t know why the question affected you so much, but you immediately broke down into tears again.  Bucky moved to your side quickly, hesitated for a moment, and then wrapped his arm around your shoulder.  You fell into him, letting him hold you as sobbed.  This man who was mostly a stranger, and who your husband loved in the same way he loved you, making him a threat.  And yet, you let him hold you and comfort you because too much had happened in your life and you’d finally reached your breaking point.

“Shhh…” Bucky soothed.  “You’re not alone.  You have Steve and those kids…”

The way he said it sounded like envy rather than comfort.  “You think that makes it easier?”

“Well -” he said softly.  “I lost everyone.”

You pulled back from him and looked into his eyes.  You didn’t know what was going on.  You thought he’d come to comfort you, but instead, it felt like he was trying to guilt you.  “You have Steve too.”

“No, I don’t.  Not the way I want him,” Bucky said.  He ran his metal hand up your arm.  It was cool and it made your skin break out in goosebumps.

“Bucky,” you whispered.  Not even sure you could frame the thoughts in your head about how scared you were that if you lost Isabella for good, even with visits from Jacob and Ryan, Steve would only ever look at you as a reminder of those times when he tried to make himself happy only to have lost it all again.  About how Bucky didn’t have that same taint on him.  You weren’t even sure you should have to tell him.  This was the worst time to be guilting you about getting the guy.

Whatever choice you had in the matter was taken away from you as Bucky pressed his lips to yours.

It happened so suddenly and unexpectedly that for a moment you were frozen in place. Not returning the kiss, but not stopping it either.  As your brain caught up with what was happening you pushed him back and scrambled away from him.

“What the hell was that?!” you shouted.

“I’m sorry,” Bucky said, holding up his hands.

You shook your head quickly, backing away from him.  “Why did you do that?!  Steve’s your best friend!”

“I’m sorry,” he repeated.  “I’m sorry.  I just -”

“You just what?”

“I just… Steve – he won’t.  He loves you and he keeps saying…” Bucky babbled, running his hands into his hair.

“He keeps saying what?”

Bucky buried his face in his hands and groaned before looking up at you.  “He keeps saying that he’s with you now and that he won’t betray you like that.  I thought – I thought maybe if you could see me the way you see him…”

“And you thought now – while I’m dealing with the fact I might never see my daughter again – was the time to bring that up?” you screamed at him.

He flinched away from you, trying to make himself smaller.  “I’m sorry.”

You huffed and hurried to the door.  “I can’t – I can’t deal with this right now.  This was the worst timing!”  You stopped as you put your hand on the door handle and dropped your head back.  “Fuck!” you screamed, letting out your pain and frustration in one primal shout.

Bucky flinched away from you again, but you didn’t stop to check on him.  Instead, you rushed from the room and away from all the problems that were plaguing you.


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